If you are a foodie, living in a foodie city, you probably have a never-ending list of restaurants to try. I have that list, and unfortunately I kept it in my notoriously unreliable memory and would immediately forget the name of that great place I heard about.
Back in October I finally decided there had to be a better way to keep track of them all, and how cool would it be to plot them on a map, and then it dawned on me…
Did you know you can create custom Google Maps? It’s not just for directions anymore!
I’d love to write up a tutorial for you, but at the moment there are two versions of Google Maps, and I don’t know which one you’re on so I’ll just point you to these: for Classic click here, for New click here.
I am a visual person so the map format appealed to me A LOT! I can see at a glance where things are located, the contact info is right there as well as a link to the website, and there is a spot to enter notes so I can remember who referred me to that restaurant or post a link to the article I read that made me want to go there, and I can write my thoughts on the place afterwards.
You also have a lot of options for the pins you can use to mark places – they can be different colors or different icons. I just went with the standard red pin and those are restaurants we still need to try. If I marked it green it means we’ve been there and would recommend it, if I marked it yellow it means we’ve been there and it was fine but didn’t really blow us away. Now, if it’s marked with the light blue hiking people, that means we love it, we’ve been there multiple times, we’d be sure to take an out-of-town visitor there, and we’d walk 500 miles if we had to. Not really, but you get my point – so far that’s just Blue Star Donuts, Lardo, and Pine State Biscuits. We haven’t hated anything, but if we ever do it will probably be a tornado symbol or something, ha!
I have been able to help out a few friends too when they ask me where they should eat. If they tell me they’re going to an event at Keller or the Moda Center, I can look up the map and see what’s near those locations. If I’m heading into Portland to check out a new shop, I can see what’s nearby, and maybe alter my route to hit up something (donuts!) close to where I’ll be.
Here it is, my EAT ALL THE THINGS map of Portland, let me now what I should add:
(No idea why the map isn’t showing up right, just use your mouse to move it around and see the pins hiding behind the list, or open in a new window.)
Google Maps is also a lot of fun if you’re vacation planning! We’re planning one for this Fall and I have LOVED using Google Maps to plot out where everything is, I even have a separate map for each day with the tentative itinerary and route. More to come on that fun stuff!
What do you think about Google Maps? Yay? Nay?
What’s on your walk-500-miles-for-it list?